Bidirectional level translator connects SD 3.0 memory with low-voltage processing hardware

12-11-2020 | Diodes Inc | Semiconductors

Diodes Incorporated has released the PI4ULS3V4857, an SD 3.0-compliant bidirectional level translator for employment in communication, consumer, and computing system applications including smartphone handsets, notebooks, SD/MicroSD card readers, wireless access points, and 5G femtocells.


The device can translate a 1.2V to 1.8V host side voltage into a memory card voltage signal of either 1.8V or 3V and vice versa. This allows SD 3.0 memory cards, which provide much shorter transfer times than other data storage solutions, to be employed in conjunction with the latest low-voltage microprocessors, SoCs, and ASICs.


With a clock rate reaching 208MHz, the device can support the fastest SD card interface currently available - SD 3.0 SDR104. This six-bit device is also suited for SDR50 (100MHz), SDR25 (50MHz), DDR50 (50MHz), and SDR12 (25MHz) operation. Backward compatibility means that it can handle legacy SD 2.0 high-speed (50MHz) and default-speed (25MHz) modes too.


By removing the requirement for an external level shifter, significant board space is saved. The built-in 100mA LDO voltage regulator and EMI filters help to further reduce the system component count and limit BOM costs. ESD protection of 8kV has also been incorporated into the translator device, thereby providing long-term operation.

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